The California Labor Commissioner’s Office has issued citations to a large farm labor contracting operation for failing to timely provide farmworkers with their final paychecks. The Labor Commissioner alleges that Vista Santa Rosa Inc., which operates in the Coachella Valley, regularly waited at least three days to pay 1,374 seasonal farmworkers their final paychecks, instead of on the last day of work, as required by law.
In addition to the farm labor contractor, the Labor Commissioner found eight of its clients jointly liable under California Labor Code section 2810.3, which holds client employers responsible for their subcontractor’s workplace violations.
California law requires employees be paid all wages due on the last day of work, unless a worker quits and gives less than three days’ notice, in which case, final wages are due within 72 hours of the notice. Waiting time penalties are imposed when the employer intentionally fails to pay all wages due to the employee at the time of separation. This penalty is calculated by taking the employee’s daily rate of pay and multiplying it by the number of days the employee was not paid, up to a maximum of 30 days.